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Andrei Arshavin


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Roman Abramovich last night launched a £12million bid to sign Euro 2008 star Andrei Arshavin - and fulfil his dream of having a fellow Russian as a first-team regular at Chelsea.Chelsea's owner personally intervened to snatch Arshavin away from Spanish giants Barcelona and Real Madrid, who are also tracking him.

It is understood Arshavin will now fly into London for talks with Chelsea, who have had a bid accepted by the playmaker's Zenit St Petersburg club.

A source at Zenit said: "Chelsea have been in contact, a deal has been agreed and Arshavin will fly to London to discuss terms.

"He was very attracted by playing in Spain but feels English football would suit his style better - and with Roman Abramovich involved there is another link and reason."

Billionaire Abramovich is championing the deal himself after Arshavin, 27, guided Russia to the Euro 2008 semi-finals.

But despite saying he always dreamt of playing for Barca, Chelsea have the financial clout to meet his demands as he is already on £60,000-aweek at Zenit and has a £12m buy-out clause.

Source: The Mirror

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